Five years ago, Destiny and Anita began their match journey.
Five years ago, Destiny and Anita began their match journey. Khandi, Destiny’s mother, brought Destiny, age 12, to BBBSMT to provide her daughter with a mentoring relationship that would offer encouragement and support. Khandi described Destiny as being nosy and wanting to know what’s going on, friendly and funny. Khandi expressed that Destiny could be hilarious at times with her jokes and storytelling. Some of Destiny’s strengths were being respectful and being able to accomplish things when she really wanted something. Upon enrollment, Khandi believed that a mentor could have a “load of benefits,” such as teaching Destiny life skills, such as self-discipline and manners. Over the years, we’ve seen Big Sister Anita fulfill all of Khandi’s hopes as a mentor for Destiny and more.
During the match’s introduction meeting, Anita recalled how shy Destiny was. However, she noted that it didn’t take long at all for Destiny to open up. The pair enjoyed activities such as getting ice cream, shopping, going to the library, and attending BBBS hosted events. However, not long into their relationship, a trend began to emerge. Anita and Destiny begins incorporating community service events into their time spent together. They volunteered at organizations like the Little Pantry and Second Harvest and they decided to make this a recurring match activity. This activity is one that time and again, Destiny enjoys and looks forward to.
As the match matured, Big Sister Anita became a steadfast encourager and positive influence that, Khandi, Destiny’s mom was looking for. Not only do they have a budding love of community service, but Anita was also there to support Destiny academically by assisting with homework, taking Destiny to the library to read, and creating goals through a vision board. Big Sister does a stellar job of teaching Destiny how to create goals and then follows through with support and encouragement surrounding those goals. Destiny shares that her Big Sister taught her to stay focused and put her best towards school. Anita also took Destiny to her first college-level sporting event, which Destiny really enjoyed!
In addition to the unmistakable impact Anita has had on her Little Sister, Anita is also a Big who is very much involved in her community. Through various community service channels, through her church, and other service organizations, Anita and Destiny have shared their story countless times. Anita has also attended Big Breakfast events in the past and has always been open and willing to witness the good works of BBBSMT.
During a support call, Khandi disclosed that at the beginning of their enrollment, Destiny was apprehensive about getting a mentor. Khandi described how funny it is that now, Destiny, could not wait to see her Big Sister and how her daughter couldn’t be matched with a better person! This is something that we are reminded of time and time again throughout the match’s history to the present. Khandi talks about the JOY, the CONNECTION, and most important, GRATITUDE. Not only do we see this expressed by mom and Destiny, but also Anita. Just as Little Sister Destiny has been encouraged and positively impacted, so too has Big Sister.
Little Destiny has made a remarkable impact on Big Sister Anita’s life too. Anita often talks about the reciprocation of care, encouragement, and companionship. Anita expresses how much Destiny has changed Anita’s life for the better and how she couldn’t imagine her life without her Little Sister. Even more so, Anita is blown away by Destiny’s resilience and positive attitude when faced with a medical diagnosis. About a year ago, Destiny was diagnosed with Lupus. Having ups and downs, good days and bad, Anita remarks on how strong Destiny has been and what an inspiration Destiny is.
Even in the face of the adversity of a life-altering health diagnosis, Destiny is thriving. She’s doing well in school, she’s set to graduate this spring and has ambitions to go into the beauty industry following graduation. We couldn’t be prouder of her. Little Sister Destiny and Big Sister Anita have carved out a beautiful and long-lasting friendship. One that no-doubt will go on, long after Destiny phases out of our program.
Of the 157 ready-to-be-matched youth currently on our waiting list, 109 are African American. We are in desperate need of African American men and women to answer the call and become mentors. Click HERE to find out more information and start your mentorship journey.